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Title: Blog by Novelist William S. Frankl, MD

A Sinking Ship or Just a Bad Storm?

January has been a tumultuous month in American politics. The Democrat health care bill continued to roil the Senate.  Corruption ran rampant in “Harry Reid land.” And then came the January 19th cataclysm in Massachusetts where Scott Brown, an obscure state senator (remember Obama?) won the special election for the Senate seat formerly occupied by Ted Kennedy.  Brown beat his Democratic opponent 52% to 47%. And with that, he removed the 60 vote Democrat filibuster proof majority and made likely the demise of the health care bill.

The Democrats went bonkers, scurrying around to fix the blame on each other, the Republicans, and of course the president, who had gone to Massachusetts to campaign unsuccessfully for Coakley, the Democratic candidate.

So, despite 59 Democratic senators and an overwhelming plurality in the House, the future appeared bleak for them.

The president indicated that the reason Brown had won was that he had spent too much time pushing his agenda and not enough time explaining the health care bill to the public. And that he had neglected the pain the people felt about the economy–––unemployment (10%), continued loss of jobs, and the lack of any concerted effort to deal with these issues. And finally he indicated that the same discontent that had led to his election was the same discontent of the Massachusetts electorate that had elected Brown! What nonsense! Brown ran on a platform to: kill the health care bill; oppose cap and trade; oppose the
prolifigate spending by the Congress and the Administration; and strongly backed spending money to buy weapons to protect the public from terrorists but not to pay lawyers to Mirandize terrorists (the ” Christmas Day bomber ” and Major Hasan).
So, on January 27th, President Obama gave his First State of the Union speech before Congress.  For days, the ” talking media heads” had opined that Obama would “tack to the center ” politically and focus on the economy and not health care.  Well as usual, they were wrong.

The speech, in my opinion, was a loser.  It was much too long ––– an hour and 15 minutes plus.  His delivery was flat.  He was patronizing and demeaning to Republicans.  He chastised the Supreme Court (!) for its free speech decision on corporate contributions during elections, warning that foreign companies would now determine the outcome of U.S. elections (totally wrong––– it’s illegal for foreigners to contribute in U.S. elections, and besides that never came up in the Court’s decision).

Obama came across as angry.  He insisted on pushing his health care bill, his cap and trade bill, and an educational program that would end up with the vast majority of the American people paying for the student loans for those opting for a career in government as opposed to those going into the private sector.

He did spend a good bit of time on trying to increase the job sector and cutting spending to decrease the deficit.  But we’ve got a three trillion dollar deficit next year and nine trillion dollars (or more) in 10 years.  So how much is saved by his freeze on spending –––– Oh, somewhere between 15 and $25 billion, a drop in the bucket.  Perhaps the president needs  new financial advisers to help him with mathematics.

There is much more to criticize, but why continue. Obama wishes to totally revamp American society.  He wants to have more and more people working for the government as it gets larger and larger, and for those who aren’t government workers, with chronic unemployment, they’ll all be on the government dole.

Perhaps, November 2010 will help stem the tide.  But don’t count on it.  Republicans are well known to screw up.

One Response to “A Sinking Ship or Just a Bad Storm?”

  1. Olmaz Says:

    Hi, Linda!I agree with you! This article was 1 of a 3 part seeirs on happiness and I was approaching it from a somewhat philosophical point of view. I shared more thoughts on the subject in the subsequent articles. What you just mentioned, letting go of things that create unhappiness, is a very important part of shaping our overall outlook and reactions to stressful events. It certainly isn’t easy and takes work to get to that point. From my personal experience, it became very easy once I resolved to refuse unhappiness (which includes all of it’s sources). And even in what I just said, we can create our own roadblocks by convincing ourselves that it is too hard to make the shift. We start accepting certain patterns and attitudes as being hardwired parts of ourselves when they really are not. Neuroplasticity allows us to reshape our thinking as well as incorporate new patterns and healthy ways of coping into our everyday lives it’s one of the reasons why Cognitive Behavioral and Rational Emotive Behavioral therapies are effective.There are several books that you may enjoy reading. If you are interested, please email me and I can give you more info about them. (I don’t want to get spammed, so you can find my email on my Author page.)Thanks for sharing your insights It’s always a pleasure

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